CHP are specialists in running an onsite Health Surveillance program in Perth and WA.
What is a health surveillance program?
A health surveillance program is required for all workers who are exposed to noise, vibration, solvents, fumes, dusts, ionising radiation and other chemicals or substances hazardous to their health.
An employer is required, by Occupational Safety and Health Regulations 1996 and the Mines Safety and Inspection Regulations 1995 to determine the consequences of exposure to hazardous agents, chemicals, noises or other substances that may affect the health of workers.
A health surveillance program can assist in minimising the risk to workers’ health from hazardous substances by:
- confirming that the workplace exposure is below the accepted level
- indicating the biological effects requiring cessation or reduction of exposure
- collecting data to evaluate the effects of exposure.
The employer is responsible for arranging and paying the expenses for any health assessment or biological monitoring required.
What is biological monitoring?
Biological monitoring is the physical assessment part of a health surveillance program.
It refers to the physiological testing for the presence of a hazardous chemical or substance, its by-products or a biochemical change in a person’s body (e.g. body tissue, blood, urine, breath).
This determines how much chemical has entered the body following exposure. For example:
- lead is often measured in blood
- mercury can be measured from a urine sample
- cadmium exposure has been tested from hair and fingernails
- alcohol can be detected in exhaled breath.
In the mining industry, the metals arsenic, mercury, lead, thallium and vanadium are either mined or used as a reagent during processing and in the laboratory.
Biological monitoring is the most convenient way to determine occupational exposure to these metals.
The more common workplace hazardous substances that often require a WorkSafe or DMP health surveillance program include:
- isocyanates (spray painters and powder coaters)
- arsenic; benzene; cadmium; chromium; creosote; pesticides; pentachlorophenol; polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAH); crystalline silica; solvents; thallium; vinyl chloride; inorganic mercury; acrylonitrile
CHP specialise in onsite health surveillance program management in Perth, around WA and in the NT.
We can help you understand what’s involved with your workplace exposures and risks.